iPhone manufacturer Foxconn bids for Taiwan’s 4G mobile spectrum license


The world’s leading assembler of consumer electronics products and Apple’s favorite contract manufacturer, Foxconn, has submitted an application for a fourth-generation high-speed mobile spectrum license in Taiwan.

It’s the latest in a series of moves by Foxconn to untie its fortunes from Apple, currently accounting for more than half of the manufacturer’s revenue. For those who don’t keep track of these things: Foxconn already operates a chain of retail stores in Asia, makes television sets for Western brands and assembles products for a variety of technology giants (including Dell and Sony)…

The firm, which also operates under the Hon Hai Precision Industry moniker, is additionally readying a range of iOS-compatible accessories and just a few days ago showcased its own smartwatch product.

Talk about diversification.

As if that weren’t enough, Foxconn in May paid 260 million New Taiwan dollars, or about $8.7 million in US dollars, for a 28 percent stake in Taifo, a local fiber-optic Internet network service provider.

Lorraine Luk, writing for The Wall Street Journal earlier today:

The investment in the 4G mobile license shows Hon Hai’s ambitions in expanding into the more profitable services industry.

The Taiwanese company is also investing in media content and software, and plans to sell its own brand of electronics accessories to improve profit margins, according to company executives.

Foxconn is looking past Apple amid sales lull caused by slowing sales of computers and smartphones. The lack of Apple product launches since last Fall is also hurting Foxconn’s bottom line.

In spite of landing contracts to assemble next-generation iPhones and iPads, its rival Pegatron is understood to be assembling a rumored less-pricey iPhone. Foxconn also recently launched its own Firefox OS-powered tablet.

Foxconn venturing into consumer electronics could put it at odds with Apple, much in the same way Apple’s supplier Samsung stepped on the iPhone maker’s turf with tablets and smartphones.